Spanish & French Studies

Requirements

FRENCH

MAJOR: The French major may choose either a literature or a culture concentration.

French Literature concentration: particularly recommended for students interested in further study of French language and culture, the literature concentration requires French 202 and six courses (24 units) above 202; one course (4 units) can be in literary theory or linguistics. Students must take one pre-19th Century literature course and are encouraged to take one non-European literature course (Africa, Caribbean). A maximum of three courses can be taken outside of the department, including courses abroad.

French Culture concentration: recommended for students with near-native language skills in speaking, writing, and reading French. This concentration requires French 202 and six additional courses. A minimum of three (12 units) of these six courses must be taught by faculty in the French section at Occidental; and two courses (8 units) must be numbered 350 and above.  One course (4 units) can be in linguistics; and a student can choose an additional course (4 units) in literature, art, history, music, or politics from other departments.  A student interested in francophone African literature, for example, might choose a course in African history or politics. A maximum of three courses can be taken outside of the department, including courses abroad.

For both the literature and culture concentration, majors must enroll in at least 4 units in the department during their senior year; this course can be the Senior Seminar (490) taken as an independent study during one or both semesters.

WRITING REQUIREMENT: Students majoring in French will satisfy the final component of Occidental's college-wide writing requirement with the submission of their translation portfolio (see Comprehensive Requirements below) which consists of two essays in English and one in French. Students should familiarize themselves with the departmental requirement at the time of declaring the major. See the Writing Program and the department chair for additional information.

COMPREHENSIVE REQUIREMENT: The comprehensive requirements in French are spread out over the senior year and consist of the following: translation, a grammar proficiency test (exempted by a score of 85% or higher on the grammar examination of French 202), a textual analysis (commentaire composé, exempted by satisfactory work in French 202), a written essay (dissertation en temps limité), an oral presentation, and a grade of B in linguistics, should the student take linguistics for the literature concentration. A thesis option is also available to satisfy part of the comprehensive requirements. All students are encouraged to take the major seminar (490).

GROUP LANGUAGE MAJOR AND DOUBLE MAJOR: Students may combine French with Chinese, German, Japanese, Russian, Spanish, or linguistics to form a Group Language major. Please see the Group Language entry in this catalog for details.

Students also may pursue a double major. Pairing a language major with such disciplines as Art, Diplomacy and World Affairs, English and Comparative Literary Studies, and History can be especially advantageous for careers or further study based on these fields.

MINOR: A minor in French consists of French 201 plus four courses (16 units) above French 201. For a literature concentration, students should enroll in French 201 and four more advanced courses, including one at the 350 level or above. For a culture concentration, students should choose French 201, three advanced courses taught by professors in the French section at Occidental and one relevant course outside the department.

HONORS: Majors in the department with an overall GPA of 3.25 may qualify for Honors at graduation through a distinguished comprehensive thesis or examination. See the Honors Program and consult the major advisor and chair for details by the end of the fall semester, junior year.

SPANISH

MAJOR: Spanish majors are required to take Spanish 202 or 211, 6 courses numbered above 202/211, and Spanish 490. Of the group of 6 courses, a minimum of 2 must be in literature and 1 in linguistics. At least one of the six courses must be numbered 340 or above. A maximum of 3 courses may be taken outside the department, including those taken on study abroad programs. Only 1 course may be taken in English. All courses taken outside the department for the Spanish major must be approved in advance by the student's departmental adviser. Students are responsible for documenting the work they do abroad, especially regarding independent research, internships or courses taken directly at a university. A portfolio of their work should be submitted upon their return in order to get credit towards the Spanish major or minor. For both the Spanish major and minor, the terms literature and culture refer to the literatures and cultures of Spain, Spanish America, and the Latino United States.The term linguistics includes linguistics courses taught both in English and Spanish.

Spanish Majors choose 1 of 3 tracks of study:

  • Spanish Literary Studies: Spanish Literary Studies: 3 courses in literature, 1 course in linguistics, and 2 other courses in literature, linguistics, or culture.
  • Spanish Linguistics: 2 courses in literature, 3 courses in linguistics, and 1 other course in literature, culture or linguistics.
  • Spanish Cultural Studies: 2 courses in literature, 3 courses in culture, and 1 course in linguistics.

MINOR: Spanish minors are required to take Spanish 202 or 211 plus 4 courses numbered 300 and above in literature, linguistics, and culture. At least one course must be numbered 340 or above. A maximum of 2 courses may be taken outside the department, including those taken on study abroad programs. Only 1 course may be taken in English. All courses taken outside the department for the Spanish minor must be approved in advance by the department.

WRITING REQUIREMENT: Students majoring in Spanish will satisfy the final component of Occidental College's writing requirement by receiving a grade of B- or higher in a Spanish course numbered 340 or above. See the Writing Program and the department chair for additional information.

COMPREHENSIVE REQUIREMENT: The comprehensive requirement consists of the senior seminar and an oral presentation on a topic related to the senior research paper.

GROUP LANGUAGE MAJOR AND DOUBLE MAJOR: Students may combine Spanish with Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian, or linguistics to form a Group Language major. Please see the Group Language entry in this catalog for details.

Students may also pursue a double major. Pairing a language major with such disciplines as Art, Diplomacy and World Affairs, English and Comparative Literary Studies, and History can be especially advantageous for careers or further study based on these fields.

HONORS: Majors in the department with GPA of at least 3.50 in major courses and an overall GPA of 3.25 may qualify for Honors at graduation through a distinguished comprehensive thesis. See the Honors Program and consult the major advisor and chair for details by the end of the fall semester, junior year.

LINGUISTICS

LINGUISTICS MINOR: Students pursuing a minor in Linguistics are required to take Linguistics 301. Subsequently, they must take a second course in linguistics. This course may be a second course listed under linguistics in the catalog, a Spanish linguistics course, or a linguistics course via transfer or study abroad (with approval of the linguistics faculty). All students must take one semester of a foreign language from one of the following categories: 1) Greek or Latin, 2) Spanish or French, 3) German or Russian, 4) Arabic, Chinese, or Japanese. This course must be in addition to and in a different category from the language used to fulfill the Core language requirement. Students must also choose two additional courses with a language focus in consultation with the linguistics faculty. These courses may include one more foreign language course, a course in Spanish linguistics, Cognitive Science 330, Philosophy 370, Education 205, or a linguistics course via transfer or study abroad (with approval of the linguistics faculty).

GROUP LANGUAGE MAJOR: Students may combine linguistics with Chinese, French, German, Japanese, Russian or Spanish to form a Group Language major. Please see the Group Language entry in this catalog for details.

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  • Email: jacquely@oxy.edu